01 March 2006

"text me"

Iceland lives and thrives on text-message communication. Got an appointment for a massage, a haircut, a dye job? They ask for you cell number and a few days before, you'll get a text message reminding you of the time. Want to order from Dominos? They'll send you a message letting you know your pizza's coming, and then they'll send you a "Gleðileg Jól" message in December thanking you for your patronage. Landing in a new country? Your cellphone will welcome you to the new country with a little information message about the local service.

All the televised competitions, like Idol and all the Eurovision voting, is also done by phone. They post phone numbers for each contestant, and for a small price (usually 100 ISK or about a dollar fifty) you can send your little sms of support to help your favorite competitor. This works in other countries as well, as J and I learned. When we were in Prague, we caught an episode of German Idol and had to vote for our favorite. I wonder if that was the only time they'd received a vote from the Czech Republic on an Icelandic phone?

All this texting means that most Icelanders my age can write a text message the way I can type- it's about as many words per minute, and they can do it in an equally offhand way as they look out the window at the same time. I feel woefully behind with my hunt-n-peck two hand technique, but I'm getting better. It is a really convenient medium after all- all the non-intrusiveness of email with incredible portability and ease. Everyone should do it.

Ship Spotting: Arnarfell came by yesterday evening fully loaded, containers stacked four-high from bow to stern. It's incredible how quickly a boat like that can move, even with such a load.
I've also just posted a photo of Magni in the shipyard I always watch. I figured since I talk about it all the time I should let you all knwo what it looks like. Also, for all you people hunting for it, the Guerilla Store is in the blue building you can see behind the boat.

1 comment:

sb said...

When I first arrived in the states in '98 I had already had my cellphone for about 5 years. At that time I had a really nice triband/worldphone.
Not only were the people at the phoneplace impressed with my phone, but people at school hardly had landlines even. At least, the cellphone culture in the US I found to be quite behind.
Icelanders love gadgets! I think even if you had homeless people in Iceland (which aren't really) they'd all have cellphones
Now, have you ever seen the Icelanders text while driving?